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Poem & Pic of the Month: October 2014

Every month, I post one of my poems (paired with one of my pictures), sharing its origin and some of its essence. Here is my Poem & Pic of the Month for October 2014:

Not Now, I'm Busy

by Patrick Bishop

Where does the rush of day come from?

And the buzz of night?

Fed by our insatiable appetite

for more, more, more!

Question: How are you?

Correct answer: Busy.

This never-ending busyness

worn like a badge of honor

The mind dances on either side

of now's razored edge,

back and forth,

skipping between past and future

Never finding the deep peace

in the sliver sharpness

of elusive now

Banging ourselves against its edge,

blinded by the grand illusion,

we are chaffed, unknowing

(as is the only way we know).

Too close to see its life.

We don't recognize now's brilliance

because it is disguised as boredom

and not enough

yet... it is all in all


Written in October 2013, this poem is fairly straightforward. It was written in the frustration of the busyness of life. The next time you ask someone how they are, see how many people give an answer in the realm of "busy." And it's true. Many of us are busier than we've ever been before. What happened to all those time-saving devices? They didn't save us any time -- they just did things quicker, so we could do more.

Ah, but if we breathe, let go, remember where we are, what we're doing, and come back to this moment, everything is okay again. Even if for just a bit. Everything is right here and now; always. As one of my teachers, Russ Hudson, says, try sneaking up on presence. We can't -- if we show up, it's here.

The Picture

Jellyfish don't worry about being too busy. They live now; that's all they know. This was taken at Shedd Aquarium in Chicago during a summer vacation trip in 2013 with my daughter Carlie. I love the colors and thought it was an interesting contrast to my fretting over the busy-ness of life. Maybe the answer is to be a jellyfish, just for a moment.

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